Minor easing of some of the tighter circuit breaker measures in Singapore will begin from May 5, with traditional Chinese medicine (TCM) practitioners allowed to do needle acupuncture for pain management.
Chinese medical halls linked to these TCM outlets will also be able to sell retail products, said Minister Lawrence Wong, who co-chairs the multi-ministry taskforce on COVID-19.
Activitives such as exercising and walking will be allowed on private condominium compounds from May 5 onwards. "Essentially the same rules outside in public areas will now apply within the residential developments as well," Wong explained.
From May 12, selected activities and services will be allowed to resume operations. These would include home-based businesses, food manufacturing and selected food retail outlets, laundry services, barbers and pet supplies.
The following week, from May 19, students in small groups will be allowed back in school compounds for face-to-face lessons. "We will focus initially on the graduating cohort that are taking national exams. Priority will be given to those who require school facilities for their coursework and practical sessions, and those who need additional support during the school vacation period," Wong said.
The Institutes of Higher Learning, particularly the ITEs, will also bring back more groups of students on campus for critical consultations, projects or practicums.
At the same time, Singapore are preparing for the safe and gradual resumption of economic and community activities after the end of the circuit breaker period on June 1. We will be tapping on digital solutions, such as the SafeEntry check-in system, and deploying them more pervasively when we resume these activities.
There will likely still be some cases in our community even after the circuit breaker period. We must be able to quickly contact trace and isolate close contacts of these infected individuals.
The government will be leveraging technology to speed up contact tracing, to more effectively prevent the formation of new infection clusters and enable the safe resumption of activities.
The app SafeEntry was deployed by the government on April 23 to log the names, NRIC/FINs and mobile numbers of individuals visiting hotspots, workplaces of essential services, as well as selected public venues. From 12 May 2020, all businesses and services that are in operation will be required come on board the SafeEntry system to log the check-in and check-out of employees and visitors.